Geriatric Care

Geriatric care involves various aspects of the care of the elderly. The number of older people will vastly increase over the next fifty years, so providers will be in high demand. Multidisciplinary by nature, geriatric care involves specialists in nursing, medicine, speech and hearing, long-term care administration, education, pharmacy, occupational and physical therapy, counseling, public administration, recreation, and retirement housing.

Specializations

  • Community-Based Residential Facility (CBRF) Caregiver — CBRF Caregivers primarily work in residential or transitional living facilities, meeting or assisting the residents in performing care and activities of daily living.
  • Geriatric Nurse Assistant — Geriatric nurse assistants perform a variety of duties to help care for older patients under the supervision of nurses and physicians.
  • Gerontologist — A gerontologist studies the aging process and individuals as they age. They study physical, mental, and social changes of older people as well as how these older people fit into society. As a result, programs and policies are established for the benefit of the aging population.
  • Long-Term Care Administrator — A long-term care administrator manages nursing homes, retirement homes, and other facilities devoted to the older population. (See Health Care Facility Administrator page)
  • Also see these occupations to which a geriatric specialty can be added: 
    Dental Hygienist
    Dentist
    Dietitian
    Health Educator
    Nurse Practitioner
    Optometrist
    Pharmacist
    Physician
    Psychologist
    Public Health
    Recreation Therapist
    Registered Nurse
    Rehabilitation Therapist
    Social Worker

Work Activities/Work Locations

Geriatric care providers of all types work in a variety of settings, including community organizations, retirement communities, academic settings, health care and long-term organizations, government agencies, and professional organizations. Many providers work directly with older people, providing direct care, counseling, advising, or developing programs. Many other professionals work on behalf of the older population, conducting research, planning and implementing services, designing products, and analyzing geriatric issues and advocating for changes.

 Education: 4-8 years

 Patient Interaction: High

 Physical Activity: Medium

 Salary: $21,937

 Job Growth: High

Related Careers

Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA)


Home Health Aide


Geriatric Care (GC)


 

Getting Started

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High School Courses

  • Students should volunteer at a local organization to become familiar with how to work with older people. 
  • Students can specialize in geriatric care, or aging, within a number of other disciplines such as biology, psychology, sociology, medicine, nursing, social work, or other health-related professions. A degree in gerontology is also available at all educational levels, associate to postdoctoral. In a master’s level program, one part is devoted to core classes, one part to specialization classes, and the last part to a thesis or internship. 

Education and Training

Method of Entry

Aging Life Care Association
3275 W. Ina Road, Suite 130
Tucson, AZ, 85741-2198
520/881-8008
www.aginglifecare.org/

American Association of Retired Persons
601 E St., NW
Washington, DC, 20049
888/687-2277 (OUR – AARP)
www.aarp.org

American Geriatrics Society
40 Fulton St., 18th Floor
New York, NY, 10038
212/308-1414
americangeriatrics.org/

American Health Care Association
1201 L Street NW
Washington, DC, 20005
202/842-4444
www.ahca.org

American Society on Aging
575 Market St., Suite 2100
San Fransisco, CA, 94105-2869
415/974-9600 or 800/537-9728
www.asaging.org

Association for Gerontology in Higher Education
1220 L St., NW, Suite 901
Washington, DC, 20005
202/289-9806
www.aghe.org

Center on Aging Minnesota Area Geriatric Education Center
420 Delaware St. SE
D351 Mayo Bldg. MMC 729
Minneapolis , MN, 55455
612/624-1185
www.coa.umn.edu/

Gerontological Society of America
1220 L St., NW, Suite 901
Washington, DC, 20005
202/842-1275
www.geron.org

Hospice Association of America
228 Seventh St. SE
Washington, DC, 20003
202/546-4759 and 202/547-7424
www.nahc.org/haa/

Hospice Organization and Palliative Experts (HOPE) of Wisconsin
3240 University Avenue, Suite 2
Madison, WI, 53705-3570
608/233-7166 or 800/210-0220
hopeofwisconsin.org/

International Commission on Health Care Certification
13801 Village Mill Dr., Suite 103
Midlothian, VA, 23114
804/378-7273
ichcc.org/

Leading Age Wisconsin
204 South Hamilton Street
Madison, WI, 53703
608/255-7060
www.wahsa.org

LeadingAge
2519 Connecticut Ave. NW
Washington, DC, 20008-1520
202/783-2242
www.leadingage.org/

National Association for Home Care and Hospice
228 Seventh St. SE
Washington, DC, 20003
202/546-4759 or 202/547-7424
www.nahc.org

National Association of Area Agencies on Aging
1730 Rhode Island Ave. NW, Suite 1200
Washington, DC, 20036
202/872-0888
www.n4a.org

National Association of Geriatric Education Centers
DHHS/HRSA/BHPR/ACGRHB
5600 Fishers Ln.
Rockville, MD, 20857
www.nagec.org/

National Association of Social Workers
750 First St. NE, Suite 800
Washington, DC, 20002-4241
202/408-8600 or 800/742-4089
www.naswdc.org

National Council on Aging
251 18th St. South, Suite 500
Arlington, VA, 22202
571/527-3900
www.ncoa.org

National Institute on Aging (NIA)
Public Information Office – Building 31, Room 5C27
31 Center Drive, MSC 2292
Bethesda, MD, 20892-2292
301/496-1752 or 800/222-2225
www.nia.nih.gov

Private Duty Homecare Association
228 Seventh St. SE
Washington , DC, 20003
202/547-7424
www.pdhca.org/#

Wisconsin Association for Home Health Care
563 Carter Court, Suite B
Kimberly, WI, 54136
920/560-5632
www.wiahc.org/

Wisconsin Geriatric Education Center
Marquette University
PO Box 1881
Milwaukee, WI, 53201-1881
www.wgec.org/default.aspx

Wisconsin Health Care Association/Wisconsin Center for Assisted Living
131 East Wilson Street, Suite 1001
Madison, WI, 53703
608/257-0125
www.whcawical.org/

World Homecare & Hospice Organization
228 Seventh St. SE
Washington, DC, 20003
202/547-7424
www.whho.org/

Career Outlook

Number Employed in 2014 (Wisconsin): 1,200 (Personal Care Aide)
Number Employed in 2014 (U.S.): 1,768,400
Expected Employment in 2024 (U.S.): 2,226,500
Percent Employment Growth (2014-2024): 26%
Expected Annual Openings: 60,110
Median Salary in 2014 (Wisconsin): $21,937 (Personal Care Aide)

Salary information is located at Career One Stop

Wisconsin AHEC Health Careers Information Center provides the most current salary information available from CareerOneStop. CareerOneStop will have a lapse between when the information is gathered and when it is released.